View Full Version : Glow In The Dark Kitties! What will they come up with next??

IBen Getiner
December 14th 07, 08:39 AM
(click on the link below to see a few pictures)

Glow-in-the-dark cat could help cut disease

By Lucy Cockcroft
Last Updated: 2:23am GMT 13/12/2007

Scientists have genetically modified three kittens so they appear
fluorescent under ultra-violet light in a procedure which could help
develop treatments for human genetic diseases.

A team of scientists led by Kong Il-keun at Gyeongsang National
University, South Korea, cloned the cats after manipulating a gene to
change their skin colour.
The fluffy white Turkish Angora cats now glow red when exposed to
ultraviolet light and the scientists believe the process could be used
to develop treatments for a range of genetic illnesses. The technology
can also help clone endangered animals like tigers, leopards and
To clone the cats the team used skin cells of the mother cat and
modified its genes to make them fluorescent by using a virus, which
was transplanted into the ova. The ova were then implanted into the
womb of the donor cat.
The three cats were born in January and February. One was stillborn
while two others grew to become adult Turkish Angoras, weighing 3kg
and 3.5kg.
A spokesman for the Ministry of Science and Technology in Seoul said:
"The ability to produce cloned cats with the manipulated genes is
significant as it could be used for developing treatments for genetic
diseases and for reproducing model animals suffering from the same
diseases as humans.
Mr Il-keun said: "This technology can be applied to clone animals
suffering from the same diseases as humans. It will also help develop
stemcell treatments."
Kong said that cloning cats with the same diseases as humans could
speed up efforts to find treatment and drugs by allowing scientists to
study animals and conduct experiments that are not possible with human
The scientist has already made headlines in South Korea by becoming
the first person in the country to clone cats in 2004 and has since
been named director of research of a state-supported project to clone
animals for therapeutic research.
South Korea's bio-engineering industry suffered a setback after a much-
touted achievement by cloning expert Hwang Woo-Suk turned out to have
been faked.
The government banned Hwang from research using human eggs after his
claims that he created the first human stem cells through cloning were
ruled to be bogus last year.
Hwang is standing trial on charges of fraud and embezzlement.